Re-enactment of the 1860 Mummers Play

On the 8th December 2018 we held a re-enactment of the mummers play, as noted down and sketched by GWW Minns in 1860. Firstly in the village hall (to an audience of 50 including 16 Minnses!) with background presentations and secondly in the Chequers Inn. We don’t know where in Charney the original performance(s) was/were held and we’d like to think that one might have taken place in The Chequers Inn. 

We are indebted to:
– Alison Minns for finding and sharing the play
– Peter Millington for deciphering and interpreting the text and for giving a presentation on the night (see link below)
– all those who took part, helped, supported and who came to watch and join in
– Steph Wright and Ruth Gerring for the costumes
– Sue Wales for the music

Charney Mummers sketch – Christmas 1860
Charney Mummers December 2018

W Jones (Father Christmas and/or Jack Winny) – William Jones (14 years) Agricultural labourer
W Barnes (Duke) – William Clark (11 years) Ploughboy [Clark was the surname of his mother’s second husband] 
J Woodbridge (Slasher) – James Woodbridge (13 years) Scholar [son of a butter merchant]     John Woodbridge (10 years) Scholar [son of an agricultural labourer] 
J Harris (Doctor) – James Harris (13 years) Agricultural labourer
Sam Lowe (Molly) – Samuel Lowe (11 years) Scholar

Father Christmas – Ian Graham
Duke of Cumberland – Joe Ody
Slasher – David Sibbert
Doctor – John Gildersleeves
Mr Jack Vinny – Diney Godfrey
Mary/Molly/Tom Tinker/Beelzebub – Ruth Gerring

Cast and musician (Sue Wales)
With Alison Minns and Peter Millington

Presentations and Explanation

Charney Bassett 1860 re-enactment background and interpretation presentation.

The video of the Village Hall performance can be viewed here.

Video of the performance in The Chequers Inn can be viewed here.

The Chequers Inn

When Jones’s Ale was new (Charney Dec 2018 Version)

When Jones’s Ale Was New

There were lots of jovial fellows, came over the hills together

Came over the hills together to join our jovial crew

Chorus: And they ordered their pints of beer and bottles of sherry

To carry them over the hills so merry

To carry them over the hills so merry

When Jones’s ale was new, me boys – when Jones’s ale was new

And the first to come in was a tinker and he was no small beer-drinker

And no man could be bolder to join our jovial crew

He said, ‘Have you got any pots and pans and kettles to fettle

My rivets are made of the very best metal’

My lord, how his hammer and pinches did rattle

When Jones’s ale was new, me boys – when Jones’s ale was new

Chorus: (Jones)

And the next to come in was a dyer and he sat down by the fire

And no man could be bolder to join our jovial crew

And the landlady told him to his face

Chimbley corner was his place

And there he would sit and dry his face

When Jones’s ale was new, me boys – when Jones’s ale was new

Chorus: (Jones)

And Charney Army came down the road and a gert big trailer did unload

And no group could be bolder to join our jovial crew

They hacked and chopped and cut a new path

Then had tea and had a laugh

And soaked their bones in an early bath

When Jacqui’s ale was new, me boys – when Jacqui’s ale was new

And they ordered their pints of beer and bottles of sherry

To carry them over the hills so merry

To carry them over the hills so merry

When Jacqui’s ale was new, me boys – when Jacqui’s ale was new

And the next to come in was a man named John, ‘cos we had nothing to sit upon

And no man could be bolder to join our jovial crew

He made a bench and carved it clean

And now it sits upon the green

‘Tis by far the best we’ve ever seen

When Jacqui’s ale was new, me boys – when Jacqui’s ale was new

Chorus: (Jacqui’s)

And the last to come in was a soldier with his big staff (ie Slasher) over his shoulder

And no man could be bolder to join our jovial crew

And the landlady’s daughter she came in

And he kissed her between her cheek and her chin

And the pints and the quarts they came rolling in

When Jacqui’s ale was new, me boys – when Jacqui’s ale was new

Chorus: (Jacqui’s)

[End]